The government is considering a new plan to charge motorists for using Britain’s roads, it has been reported.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak is contemplating the move to cover a tax shortfall of £40bn caused by the rise in popularity of electric cars, according to The Times.
The UK has one major toll road – the M6 Toll in the West Midlands – and drivers also face levies when using certain tunnels and bridges.
According to the report, Sunak is “very interested” in the concept of a national road pricing scheme but it is unclear how the charges would be calculated.
Currently, motorists pay 57.95p in fuel duty for each litre of petrol and diesel they buy – a figure that has been frozen since March 2011.
This brings in £28bn a year, or 1.3% of national income, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, while VAT on fuel and vehicle excise duty also raises money for the Treasury.
It has recently been reported that a proposed ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars will be accelerated to 2030 as part of efforts to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
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